Deep Dive

5 Advanced Digital Marketing Campaign Tracking Tools

by Matt Bohar, Senior Database Marketing Specialist, Skyline Exhibits

Virtually every marketer’s website has Google Analytics tracking installed, and if yours doesn’t – may we ask why not?  Performance at trade shows can be greatly improved if exhibitors measure the website engagement they receive from their email blasts and pay-per-click advertising. Such stats aren’t automatically tracked in Google Analytics, so manually enabling campaign tracking can give you rich insights into the effectiveness of your inbound marketing.

I will discuss critical metrics you should be tracking, but may not be: trackable campaign URLs, AdWords & Analytics linking, media file views, e-commerce statistics, and the search terms people are using to find your website on Google.

But to use it effectively for marketing ROI, you need to make sure you’re tracking all of your marketing campaigns. Here are the a few of most common tracking tools you may not be using:

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AdWords & Analytics Linking:  Google AdWords is great way to raise awareness for your trade shows, whether though search, display or remarketing ads. But if you don’t link your AdWords account with your Google Analytics account, you are missing important information about how that paid traffic is (or isn’t) interacting with your website!

To find out if your AdWords or Analytics accounts have been properly linked, just login to Google Analytics and choose Acquisition > AdWords > Campaigns. You’ll see a message at the top of the screen if AdWords and Analytics with simple instructions for getting these two Google platforms to share data.

Tracking all your advertising, email, referral and social campaigns can help you tap into the robust data in your Google Analytics accounts – revealing which marketing platforms, content, ads, etc. are earning you the best ROI on your exhibit marketing dollars.

Trackable Campaign URLs:  While your email marketing software automatically tracks metrics such as how many people received, opened, or clicked on one of your campaign links, it won’t automatically show how those click-through-visitors engaged with your website.

But by adding UTM tags to campaign URLs via Google’s Campaign URL builder, you can later use Google Analytics to determine which email blasts resulted in sales, leads, most time on site, or other key performance indicators.

The Campaign URL builder can be used to create any offsite hyperlinks that will link back to your site, including links you provide to your affiliate partners, links you share on social media, or URLs that you feature in printed marketing materials.

To later see which campaign URLs are performing the best, just log into Google Analytics and check under Acquisition > Campaigns > All Campaigns.

Tracking Your SEO Keywords:  If you’ve looked at your Google Analytics account even once, you’ve likely seen the missing, inaccurate, or deeply unhelpful information that appears under All Traffic > Channels > Organic Search > Keywords. To truly see what type of keywords people are using in Google to find your site, you need to first register your site with Google Search Console, and then link your Search Console account with your Analytics account. The process only takes a few seconds, and will immediately show you how many times you have appeared in search results (and for which keywords), how highly you rank in Google for these queries, and how many people clicked on your website in search results.

Tracking Media File Views & Downloads:  While your Google Analytics account automatically tracks views of your html web pages, it doesn’t automatically track how visitors view your other content, such as downloads of your PDF product spec sheets or views of your embedded videos. Such file views are often the sign of highly-engaged website users, so you want to understand how these people arrived on your site, so you can attract more of that type of traffic. To do so, simply use the handy Google Tag Manager to add a tracking code to your website links and click buttons.

Ecommerce Tracking:  If you sell products online, it’s important to understand how much each transaction cost you, so that you can achieve an effective ROI on your digital marketing. Shockingly, many marketers and exhibitors alike, don’t enable ecommerce tracking in Analytics, and are thus missing out on this data, as well as information on where sales traffic is coming from, which types of visitors are abandoning their shopping carts, etc.

Google Analytics is a robust tool for understanding your website traffic, but its out-of-the-box setup settings don’t track these and other key metrics. By spending a few minutes doing some manual setup, you or your web team can get a much better idea of the effectiveness of your digital marketing efforts..

This article by Matt Bohar originally appeared at www.skyline.com

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